We booked all of our excursions through the cruise line. I was just looking at our reservations and noticed that one excursions lasts until 2:30pm. The ship is scheduled to be in port until 3pm. Is the shore excursion time the time they return us to port or the time the activity ends and we get back on the bus or whatever to go back to the port? I don't want to be late for the ship. It's our last port of call of the trip.
Carnival Celebration (Key West, Nassau)- June '07-First time cruiser
Rhapsody of the Seas (Alaska) - June '08
Carnival Freedom (Belize, Panama, Costa Rica) - June '09
Carnival Dream (Cozumel, Roatan, Belize, Costa Maya) - June '11
Carnival Freedom (Key West, Grand Cayman, Jamaica) Dec. '12
that should be the time you will get back to the ship. unless there is a major reason if you are on a ship's excursion and it is late getting back the ship should wait for you.
on one cruise we took in Panama the excursion we took was to go on the canal to the Pacific, then board a bus back to the ship, we did not even get off the ferry until after the ship was to have left and by the time we got back we were 3 hours over time, but the ship was still there, of course there were 300 of us from the ship on that and I am sure that it happend a lot.
at another port the tour bus was stuck behind an accident on the road that was taking a long time clearing so the ship had the tour opperator send another bus and then the passengers walked around the accident and boarded the new bus and then back to the ship, we were an hour late leaving .
Star Princess 2005, Sun Princess 2005
Caribbean Princess 2006, MSC Lirica 2006 , NCL Pearl 2007, Majesty of the Seas 2008, Carnival Destiny 2008, MSC Lirica 2009, Carnival Valor 2009,Carnival Legend 2010, Carnival Liberty 2010,Carnival Fantsay 2011,Carnival Valor Feb 2012, MSC Poesia Dec 2012, MSC Poesia April 2013
"We booked all of our excursions through the cruise line"...that is your saving grace...no problem.
Well, yes and no. It is very true that booking through the cruise line gives a margin of safety, as they will know if that tour is late returning and make every effort to wait for it. However, remember that "Time and tide wait for no man." In exceptional circumstances ships have been known to sail and leave excursioners behind.
As far as scheduling, if you are on a scheduled ship's tour you can be assured that the schedule is appropriate for the ship's sailing and getting back from a ship's excursion at 2:30 when the ship sails at 3:00 will work fine. On an independent excursion we would be more likely to allow at least an hour before scheduled sailing. A couple of times we have hustled back from independent trips just as they were about to raise the gangplank and been practically the last pax aboard. That is not comfortable.
I am an on time person to the nth degree, so being late would drive me crazy...so..I always book Caribbean tours in the morning with, an up, an at em mentality, then if something does arise, we don't worry...in Europe, you can't get back to the ship quickly in some ports.
Trip, with her book & tea!
Chat Hostess & Board Moderator
Seems as if a lot of cruise lines are promoting the idea of doubling up on shore excursions and the timing is such that you can take a morning excursion, return to the ship for a quick sandwich at the buffet and then take off for an afternoon excursion. That is a really busy day for us. In ports that warrant it, we might take an all day trip with a local lunch someplace. But in most common ports it is more than I want to do!
We used Shore Excursioneer for our last minute bookings and although one excursion in Grand Cayman was fully booked, they were able to set us up on an alternative departure and the booking was quick and easy.